A Reservoir of Information for Urban Farmers: A General Analysis of Upstart University

Intro: Upstart University Powered by Plenty Of all the searching for a reservoir of information that is relevant to large-scale vertical hydroponic and aquaponic farms, there is only one source that floats on top. Upstart University is an online college that is semi-specific of ZipGrow and Deep Water Culture systems that are primarily set up…

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Heating it up: Compost Heated Greenhouses

Most Alaskan gardeners are creative out of necessity. With a growing season made up of unique light patterns, temperature fluctuations and abbreviated season lengths, gardeners learn to adapt. Gardeners who want to continue growing into the winter months have additional challenges. There is a great deal of information available about season extenders – nothing compares…

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Poinsettia Progression: The Origin, Growth, and Care of Euphorbia pulcherrima

  The holiday season is upon us once again, and what holiday decorations would be complete without the addition of colorful poinsettias?   The poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) in its many varieties can bring stunning colors to your holiday season display, but did you ever wonder what the origin of this symbolic holiday plant is,  how…

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Our First Year Gardening, Mistakes and Accomplishments

My wife and I purchased our first home in August of 2016 located in Fairbanks, Alaska. The property included 10 acres of land. Most of the land is treed but the backyard area included a cleared space that is large enough for a garden. This was our first opportunity to create our own organic garden.…

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We Grew It! Sustainable Agriculture in the Southeast Island School District

Southeast Island School District The Southeast Island School District (SISD) covers 7 communities on Prince of Wales Island, Port Alexander on Baranof Island, and Hyder next to the Canadian border. Although large in size the district serves around 160 students in these diverse areas. Within the district we have 4 greenhouses with a 5th on…

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Greenhouse Tomatoes in Galena

Starting the Process… While being surrounded by family and friends that garden, this summer finds me having endeavored into the art of growing a small variety of tomatoes for the first time.   There are so many lessons to absorb.   In addition to wading through the learning curve of germinating seeds, transporting starts and…

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Sprouting Hearts: Instilling a love for gardening in foster kids in Wasilla Alaska

Twenty years ago I would have laughed at you if you said I’d be that lady standing in the middle of a garden with my sun hat, bending over and pulling weeds. Twenty years ago I was in high school, living in my 5th foster home, doing very well. I was in a stable environment,…

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The Great Tomato Fiasco of 2015 or How I Sweltered My Way to Wisdom

2015 In autumn 2014, my partner built us a “sunroom” off the side of our house in Kenai, Alaska. He intended to use it for storage; I intended to fill it with plants come summertime. In the first week of March 2015, I bought indoor seed starting lights and mats and seeded dozens of plants…

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Opportunity of a Lifetime: How I Came to be the Manager of a School District Greenhouse in Tok, Alaska

Looking For Direction and Purpose We’ve all heard of people obtaining their dream job, but finding and getting my own seemed a long shot.  Over the course of my adult life thoughts of a dream job often came to mind, especially on those days I dreaded going to work at all, those days I forced…

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